NEW YORK (CBSNewYork/AP) — Federal investigators on Monday continued to seek answers about how fast a tour bus headed for New York was traveling before it crashed in Delaware last month, resulting in the deaths of three passengers.
According to a preliminary report released Monday by the National Transportation Safety Board, investigators also have been trying to determine the bus driver’s activities before and after the trip.
Authorities also were working with the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration to review the bus company’s safety and operation practices. At the time of the Sept. 21 crash, it did not have a safety rating.
Fifty-six-year-old Jinli Zhao of Flushing, Queens is charged with two counts of operating a vehicle causing the death of another person in last month’s crash.
The crash happened around 4:20 p.m on Sept. 21 in New Castle, south of Wilmington.
The 1996 Setra Touring Coach bus was going through a curve when it left the road and overturned, police said. The bus slid on its roof down a grass embankment and came to rest on its left side, police said.
Hua’y Chen, a 54-year-old woman from New York City, was found under the bus and was pronounced dead at the scene, police said. Idil Bahsi, a 30-year-old woman from Istanbul, Turkey, was taken to a hospital and later died.
A third passenger – Jyostina Poojari, 43, of Mumbai, India – died shortly after Zhao made a court appearance last week.
Police said Zhao lost control of the bus as he tried to negotiate a moderate curve at too fast of a speed. The speed was determined to be a contributing factor in the cause of the two deaths, police said.
Drugs and alcohol were not considered a factor in the crash, police said.
The passengers were taking a three-day sightseeing tour to Washington that began in New York, authorities said. The crash happened as the bus was heading back to New York City.
After the crash, Zhao was treated at from St. Francis Hospital in Wilmington and was released into state police custody.
Check Out These Other Stories From CBSNewYork.com:
[display-posts category=”news” wrapper=”ul” posts_per_page=”4″]
(TM and © Copyright 2014 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2014 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)